Jovian Shadows : Episode 43

Here it is, the final episode of Jovian Shadows.  I may at some time in the future create a second draft and make it into a full fledged novel.  It would probably nearly double in size but who knows.  I’ll post a link to a mobile / pdf version to this draft shortly.

I hope you enjoyed reading as much as I did writing it.

The image of Melan looked around the table at the gathered Humans. “I’ll take questions now.”

Everyone looked at each other with expressions of worry. It was Redbeard who broke the silence. “How long?”

Melan said, “It is hard to say. As I said, we were coincidentally close, and already familiar with your species. The others are unaware, or will be until they receive the signal.”

Castaneda said, “Who will get here first?”

Melan’s tongue ran under his lower lip as he thought. “I would say… the Charem De would be most likely to arrive. They are faster than the Ixuul and more ambitious. Though this system has little tactical use, it might some day, and its resources are fresh.”

Landover leaned back in his chair again. “What is your assessment of Earth’s current defensive ability?”

Melan didn’t hesitate this time. “The Charem De would control your system in fewer than 30 days. Earth has no adequate defense in space. You stand a better chance on the ground. You are aggressive and well armed, but not well enough. Your planet would fall to Charem De control within three months.”

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Jovian Shadows : Episode 42

I wonder if the AIs have a Machiavelli chip.

Lim felt around the communications systems of the FDR, being as subtle as she could to not arouse Perseid. The door she used to get in before was closed. She could force it of course, but this was to be a stealth mission. She wanted Perseid to be a friend, an ally- a servant for sure, but she would need her to volunteer to become embodied. Then Lim could occupy the FDR’s vacant AI slots and prepare it for a return trip to Earth.

She found what she was looking for- a personal communication link from Landover to Perseid. It would allow Lim to slip in to the weakly encrypted sections of the ship: the basic air scrubbers, the weapon alarm systems, the lights, all of the trivial systems. Perseid would notice the blip, and become aware of Lim’s intrusion almost immediately, but by then it would be too late.

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Jovian Shadows : Episode 41

In which Melan reveals the measure of threat to the Human race.

Melan stood away from the table as the others took their seats.

Jones stood beside Melan like she was guarding him, but she had removed her helmet and set it aside.

Cepheid stood opposite Melan. He stepped forward and placed a disc on an empty seat. A black metal pole rose from it, stopping after about extending a meter. Light flickered from the top of the pole, and a hologram of Melan appeared as if he was sitting in the chair himself.

Chairs shuffled. People gasped. Jones smiled. “That’s what I said.”

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Jovian Shadows : Episode 40

Bet you didn’t see this coming!

Also, I’ve had the idea planted in my head I should polish this up and serialize it on Amazon.  I’d have to smash together some of the episodes to make the sections meaty enough to consider downloading, but it’s something to think about.

Chaudhuri returned just in time for the doors on the docking elevator to open once more.

Two people, one in full marine battle armor, the other made of white plastic wearing an AI uniform stood in front of the alien. It was encased in the chrome armor Chaudhuri and Redbeard had seen on the video screen, walking on the surface of Europa.

The three walked into the docking bay. The marine stopped in front of Redbeard and flipped her visor up. “No parade for me Geoff?”

“Gwen!” Redbeard’s hands twitched. “I’m- I’m so happy to see you alive!”

Chaudhuri flashed a glance at Redbeard.

Redbeard tried to ignore it.

Jones looked at Chaudhuri and smiled through clenched teeth. “Hoped I was dead too?”

Chaudhuri looked back at Redbeard. “What is she talking about?”

Cepheid approximated clearing his throat. “This may be hard to believe, but I’m Cepheid. The Keyaniim were kind enough to create this housing for me. It’s good to see you’re well, Doctor.”

Chaudhuri was still staring at Redbeard.

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